Thursday, October 21, 2004

During the day in Gaza, the IDF assassinates Izzeddine al-Qassam Brigades 2d in command ‘Adnan al-Gul (a founding mbr. of Hamas whom Israel considers responsible for the development of Qassam rockets and whom it has tried to assassinate on at least 4 previous occasions), firing 2 missiles at him as he leaves a building in Gaza City, also killing senior field cmdr. Imad Abbas, wounding 4 bystanders; attempts to assassinate PRC military cmdr. ‘Abd al-Rahman Qarmut, firing a missile at his home in Jabaliya r.c., wounding him and his child; fatally shoots 2 armed Palestinians (1 AMB, 1 Islamic Jihad) who attempt to infiltrate Israel nr. the Nahal Oz crossing outside Gaza City; conducts 2 raids into Rafah, shelling residential areas, demolishing 7 Palestinian homes, bulldozing 9 d. Also in Rafah, an IDF soldier investigating a smugglers’ tunnel is killed by an explosion, possibly fr. a booby trap; Hamas claims responsibility. In Hebron, the IDF raids 2 mosques during evening prayers, interrogates and checks IDs worshipers; raids a university, checks students’ IDs; raids, occupies a Palestinian home. In Qalqilya, the IDF demolishes 2 Palestinian homes. Palestinians fire a Qassam rocket at Sederot, a mortar at Gush Katif, causing no damage or injuries. Jewish settlers attempt to steal olives fr. a grove in al-Mughayyir; Palestinians confront and scuffle with them; 1 settler opens fire, injuring 1 Palestinian; the IDF intervenes, detains the gunman. Islamic Jihad mbrs. stop the car of PA military intelligence officer Hajij al-Sirhi in central Gaza, seize the car and 2 rifles; Sirhi reportedly impounded the car fr. Islamic Jihad mbrs. several mos. earlier. (VOI, VOP 10/21 in WNC 10/23; BBC, NYT, WP, WT 10/22; AFP, VOP 10/22, HJ, VOI 10/23 in WNC 10/26; PR 10/17; PCHR 10/28)